A chance to stop the laundry cycle of Pakistan’s elections 

A chance to stop the laundry cycle of Pakistan’s elections 

Pakistan’s polity still has a chance to use the unique moment that voters have provided, to change course

With the results of last week’s elections in Pakistan, voters there have delivered their politicians a unique moment in history — one which could present the polity an opportunity to change the endless cycles of the past. These cycles have always brought those favoured by the military establishment to power in the country, followed by a period of tensions and fracture between the military and the political rulers, the dismissal of that government, the appointment of another, and then another election. Rinse, repeat.

The consistency with which each of the periods of political governments in Pakistan has met its end has produced three constants: first, none of the country’s 30 Prime Ministers thus far has completed a full term in office. Second, every current major political party, i.e., Bhutto’s Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), and Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI), has at some point been the military’s “favourite” in an election. And third, each of those parties has by turn fallen out of favour as well, and its leaders have found themselves imprisoned or ‘exiled’ from the country.

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